I grew up in Syosset, New York, a suburb on the North Shore of Long Island. I attended public schools and received an amazing education. The resources I received were unlimited and graduating from high school was a given and attending college was expected. Years later when I began my teaching career in New York City, I quickly realized that the experience I had as a student was not the norm. The roster in many of my middle school classes regularly topped 30 students. Each grade was assigned one guidance counselor, but with more than 600 students per grade this hardly made an impact. As each year came to a close, I often wondered how many of my students would eventually graduate from high school, and truthfully, I worried that many of them would not.
Growing up, I also had the opportunity to attend sleep-away camp every summer. Once my camper days were over, I began working as a camp counselor. I loved seeing how my campers enjoyed the same experiences I had as a child – playing sports, making s’mores, and camping underneath the stars. Over the years I realized that summer camp provided so much more than ‘fun experiences’ for children. Camp provided the opportunity to learn how to work with others, how to live with others as part of a community, and how to build and enhance self-esteem. The list goes on and on.
It was while I was working as a camp director that I was introduced to Project Morry. Project Morry is a year-round youth development organization that provides to each child a multi-year commitment anchored by a superb residential summer camp experience. This incredible organization not only offers its campers the opportunity to enjoy a month at summer camp, but more importantly, it provides the safety-net and resources to students that many schools cannot offer during the year. Frankly, Project Morry gives kids the chance to succeed. And since its inception, 100% all Project Morry graduates have gone on to graduate from high school, and 80% of the alumni go onto college or university.
I continue to be amazed, impressed and blown-away by this organization and all those who are involved. My goal in the next 34 days is to raise $800. Any amount that you can donate is greatly appreciated. If you would like to learn more about Project Morry, please watch the video that I have posted here, or visit their website at www.ProjectMorry.org Thanks!